The examination of the possible direct link between environmental protection and firm performance has generally produced mixed results. This paper contributes to the literature by considering the antecedents of hotel managers' environmental attitudes to check whether perceptions of the external and internal factors are behind the adoption of a proactive environmental management. The study also tests whether or not the resource-based view of the hotel mediates the positive relationships of proactive environmental management and improved environmental performance with competitive advantage and financial performance. This contribution is original because this study develops a comprehensive whole picture of this path process, which has previously only been partially discussed in the literature. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.